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Focused on ANWR, Murkowski invites Obama to milkshake summit

  • Author:
  • Updated: May 31, 2016
  • Published March 29, 2012

Prompted by a reporter's question about opening Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski has invited President Obama to a "milkshake summit." She even suggests that he bring along the First Lady.

"I know that the President and the First Lady enjoy milkshakes, and it would be my honor to treat them as we discuss the innovative technologies that will allow us to put a 'straw' into North America's largest oil field from outside ANWR boundaries," Murkowski said.

"Without any harm to the surface of the coastal plain, we can produce a huge volume of oil at a time when our nation desperately needs it," she said.

The invitation follows a reporter's question to the presidental spokesman Jay Carney about directional drilling to get to the oil out of ANWR, which is off limits to wildcats. Murkowski has proposed legislation to allow such drilling. The legislation is co-sponsored by Alaska U.S. Sen. Mark Begich and Republican Sens. John Barrasso of Wyoming and John Hoeven of North Dakota.

The reporter wanted to know Obama's reaction to legislation that would, in the reporter's words, "allow you to drink ANWR's milkshake from adjacent state lands."

Carney said that he hadn't talked to the president about the "milkshake principle," but reiterated Obama's commitment to domestic development of oil and gas. He noted that the Department of Interior had recently approved Shell's Beaufort Sea oil spill response plan.

The milkshake reference likely comes from the movie, "There Will Be Blood," loosely based on Upton Sinclair's 1927 novel "Oil!," which was a cautionary tale about greed and exploitation -- and, of course, sucking oil out of the ground.

From the movie:

"Drainage! Drainage, Eli, you boy. Drained dry. I'm so sorry. Here, if you have a milkshake, and I have a milkshake, and I have a straw. There it is, that's a straw, you see? You watching? And my straw reaches acroooooooss the room, and starts to drink your milkshake... I... drink... your... milkshake!"

The reference likely does not come from the hiphop song, "Milkshake," which goes, in part:

"My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard, And they're like It's better than yours, Damn right it's better than yours..."

Contact Amanda Coyne at amanda(at)

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